Brisbane Airport BNE Issue 3 - page 12

Populated Pods
Shape of Things to Come
the Block QUT Creative Industries precinct
risbane has been called the River City,
the Smart City and a New World City,
but it could easily be the Creative City
and you don’t have to look far to see why. Every
week talented musicians entertain passers-by at
city squares and malls and right now there are
exciting artworks, images, objects and innovative
ideas on show at venues across the city – and
that’s just what’s in plain view. Out of sight in
studios and bedrooms, computer games are
being developed, images are being manipulated,
jewellery is being fashioned and new music
recorded in the pursuit of passion. It’s giving
Brisbane a reputation – and one that’s being
recognised beyond the state borders.
It’s not news that Brisbane is home to some
of the most influential Australian bands and
artists of the last 40 years which has helped the
city develop a distinct music DNA. From ’70s
rock band The Saints, ’80s jangle-pop band
The Go-Betweens and ’90s alternative rock
Brisbane shows off creative talent
Showcases across the city turn the spotlight on our most creative talent, from
musicians to furniture makers, urban designers and more
band Powderfinger. And there are others more
recently who have captured the attention of a new
audience, such as rock four-piece Last Dinosaurs
and Queensland Music Award winner and ARIA
nominee, folk pop songstress Emma Louise.
Both have been among the musos entertaining
city audiences as part of the City Sounds project,
Australia’s largest free live music program which
showcases emerging and established music talent
at nine locations across the CBD every week –
everything from alternative, acoustic, indie and
folk, to jazz, reggae, electro and world music. Last
year it presented more than 750 artists in more
than 2300 performances.
Georgia Potter was one of them (see story
page 30) and Angharad Drake is another. At 21
Drake is a veteran performer, singing since she
was little and playing the guitar since she was
13, but it wasn’t until she came to Brisbane from
the Sunshine Coast to go to university that her
talent was made public. A friend introduced her
to City Sounds and now the contemporary folk
artist has become a favourite on the program. It
has led to invitations to play at other venues and
festivals and last year she recorded her first EP
in her bedroom and another is in the works. It’s
small steps for Drake and not yet enough to take
her away from her part-time market research job
but she says it gives her the satisfaction of doing
exactly what she wants her own way.
Grant Wallis is an award-winning songwriter,
performer and producer who selects the talent for
City Sounds. He says there’s no shortage of talent
to choose from and the standard of applications
is getting higher. So far this year City Sounds has
chosen a roster of more than 500 performers from
almost double the number of applications.
Wallis thinks our musical talent may have
something to do with our isolation from other
markets which makes us less likely to follow the
trends and more likely to do our own thing,
helping to develop our own style and sound.
Certainly what may have helped our talent gain
momentum in the last decade has been initiatives
such as QUT’s Creative Industries precinct, the
first of its kind when it was launched almost a
decade ago. It put Brisbane at the forefront of the
new arts model that is as much about the business
side of making a career from artistic pursuits as
it is about the process of creating it. As a result,
QUT Precincts assistant curator Rachael Parsons
has seen a much more active creative community
with many more opportunities being generated by
graduates themselves in artist-run initiatives such
as boxcopy, Level ARI, Vegas Spray, Addition
gallery and Brisbane Experimental Art Festival
(and there are many more).
“Some have spaces like galleries or online
initiatives to promote and market arts practises,
some run programs, exhibitions, talks,
Emerald Triffids
by Lucas Salton in
Chain Reaction
Artisan Gallery
Miss Geisha
Fukutoshi Ueno in
Chain Reaction
Artisan Gallery
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